New running group in Aylesbury proves a big success


A new running group that was set up by a local resident has proved extremely popular. Rachel Barnett, from Oving in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, identified there was a real need to get a beginners' running group set up in her village at a location and time that was suitable for the local community.

After support from Run England and Reactivate Bucks (Buckinghamshire's physical activity project for adults), Rachel (pictured: front, second from left) attended the LiRF (Leadership in Running Fitness) training course and set up her first 10 week course.

Rachel's Running Group meets at The Recreation Ground on Bowling Alley, Oving, on Wednesdays. Run England spoke to Rachel about her new project.

Run England: Why did you set up the sessions?

Rachel Barnett: I take part in many different sports and always feel better when I have exercised. I am also a qualified and experienced teacher and have taught a wide variety of sports to different ages over the years. I moved to Oving some 16 years ago and it was great that I could go cross country running from my door step. I am also the local volunteer that maintains Rights of Way, so I have got to know many footpaths and running routes. Combining all the above, I was in a perfect situation to start a running group locally and help to get people fitter and enjoying the outdoors. 
RE: How has Run England and the Reactivate Bucks project helped you to launch this activity/activities?

RB: Abbi McMullen (Regional Activator for Buckinghamshire) has been a great help to me to get things sorted quickly and help to fund my training and the promotion of my group. She is available as a first port of call when I have any questions or problems. Without Reactivate Bucks I would not have considered setting up the group.

RE: What would you say to someone else looking to do something similar but lacking in confidence? 

RB: Go for it, you will gain a lot from learning a new skill and helping local people to get fitter. Your confidence will grow as well as your sense of achievement.

RE: How does leading a session make you feel?

RB: Useful. It’s great to meet new people that I wouldn’t have met otherwise.  I like the challenge of planning different sessions and routes and feel happy to be able to offer a village running group.

Rachel is now advertising her second 10 week course to start in September, for more information please contact Regional Activator Abbi McMullen on or 01296 585340.


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